Kettering’s values overlap. Accountability is no exception. Lack of accountability is Patrick Lencioni’s fourth dysfunction in The Five Dysfunctions of a Team. In his book, it is mostly about holding others accountable, but I feel it starts with us as individuals.
Our formal definition of Accountability is: We take responsibility for our actions and outcomes
I keep my commitments
When asked to do something, it is easier to say yes than no, promise earlier rather than later. Keeping everyone happy is a priority but over promising and underdelivering will soon impact your reputation and that of the business.
This might seem obvious but strong discipline is required to be clear what commitments you have made and to stay focused on these as priorities.
I am on time
I confess I’m personally pedantic about time. The following quote has been attributed to many people but it appeals to me – “Early is on time, on time is late”
In professional services business such as Kettering, people’s time is 90% of our cost. It is more than a question of cost though. If you are consistently late to meetings for example, then I start to wonder about your professionalism and respect for those you are meeting.
I focus on outcomes, not intentions
We all have an intention to be good consultants that clients like. This is important but we are ultimately measured by the outcome we achieve. It is important in any role to pause occasionally and think, “What’s the big picture? Is what I’m doing genuinely adding real value” This can be harder than it sounds when you are deep into a project.
I get the training I need
Our clients expect us to be up to date and have the relevant skills. Finding time to make sure you identify the training you need is vital, and getting it done is a core requirement of any professional. This can be hard when your primary focus is meeting client needs but the individual is ultimately responsible for getting it done.
Accountability is core to every professional.